Review: Logitech's Circle 2 Brings HomeKit Compatibility and a New Design

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Oct 6, 2017.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Logitech's Circle 2, introduced in June, is the second-generation version of its Circle home security camera. This new version features a redesigned body, wired and wire-free versions, accessories that let it be positioned anywhere, and, through a recent update, HomeKit support.

    Circle 2 is meant to be used as a home security device and it's ideal for keeping an eye on your house while you're away from home. It's also great for keeping an eye on pets and children, and even communicating with the two-way microphone. Circle 2 connects to a home WiFi network and offers cloud functionality that lets you view video anywhere.

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    I've been using a Logitech Circle camera for two years now sans HomeKit functionality, so I was eager to check out the HomeKit version. This is only the second HomeKit-compatible camera available on the market, and with the new design, the Logi Circle app, and cloud upload ability, the Circle 2 easily beats out the D-Link Omna as the best HomeKit camera you can buy at the moment.

    Though Logitech offers both wired and wire-free versions of the Circle 2, HomeKit only works with the wired version because Apple requires an always-on camera connection, and that's not how the wire-free Circle 2 works.

    Design and Features

    The wired version of the Circle 2 consists of a small palm-sized camera module that attaches to a base with a pivoting neck, allowing the camera to be positioned and rotated into an ideal angle to work with any room setup. The base can be attached to a wall with a wall mount, and the camera module itself is detachable from the base because it can connect to other accessories like a plug or window mount.

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    Circle 2 has a white shell around it, and the camera base is also white. It's a simple, attractive design that melds into the decor around it. There's no mistaking this is a camera, though. It has a wide camera lens and an LED light that comes on when it's activated, but that can be turned off for a slightly more discreet look. At the back, there's a 10-ft power cord that needs to be plugged into the wall.


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    Article Link: Review: Logitech's Circle 2 Brings HomeKit Compatibility and a New Design
     
  2. hipnetic macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    Can you clarify the advantages of this camera over the D-Link Omna? From what I can gather:
    1) Cloud storage (which, for some, the on-board storage of the D-Link might be considered an advantage)
    2) Improved mounting flexibility and weatherproofing

    Anything else?
     
  3. jonnysods macrumors 603

    jonnysods

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    #3
    My my 2 kitties I'll be getting hit up all day with notifications ;)
     
  4. az431 macrumors 6502

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  5. jclo Editor

    jclo

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    #5
    It's a lot easier to position because of the flexible head. Omna is tough because it's just a cylindrical body. I will also say that I prefer the Logi Circle app to the Omna app which has been endlessly buggy for me for months. Like so buggy I haven't been able to save video clips. Video clips are also 20 seconds in length so it has some of the same issues as the Circle 2 there, only a little worse. Cuts off too early a lot of the time. App is pretty poor with the video management too, which can be frustrating.

    There was just an update that improves the app somewhat, which is great (zoom added finally!). But I still think Circle 2 is the superior option here. I've also had some connectivity problems with Omna -- like sometimes it just won't load. For me, no cloud storage is the biggest issue.
     
  6. nutmac macrumors 68040

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    #6
    But isn't "local storage only" means if the burgler steal the camera, all the evidence is gone?
     
  7. jclo Editor

    jclo

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    #7
    This is exactly why I don't have notifications turned on!
     
  8. Corrode macrumors 6502a

    Corrode

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    #8
    I was thinking of upgrading to this from a Dropcam Pro but after reading your review, I get the sense that there’s not a ton of additional value in upgrading. Homekit would be nice, but not a necessity.

    Also, Canary’s latest announcement has me worried that current features could be removed.
     
  9. F4C4 macrumors newbie

    F4C4

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    #9
    Anyone interested in a home security camera should be aware of what Canary recently did: removed advertised free services forcing customers into their subscription service...
     
  10. brushlee macrumors newbie

    brushlee

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    #10
    Interesting... can you turn on/off camera or put it into private mode using HomeKit automation?
    Like from 6 pm to 9 am you do not need to record yourself ;)
     
  11. jclo Editor

    jclo

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    #11
    Nope. Privacy mode can only be toggled on in the Logi Circle app.
     
  12. twistedpixel8 macrumors member

    twistedpixel8

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    #12
    You should have reviewed the wireless one. I did and it was absolutely useless. You could click the “live feed” button and go make a cup of tea before it actually loaded the stream. 2 way chat? Good luck with that...

    This is how companies are able to claim “2 months battery”: the camera is basically off with a trickle of power for the motion sensor. In order for it to actually record or live stream, it has to boot up which takes significant time.

    I think I’ll stick to drilling holes and running wires for now!
     
  13. brushlee macrumors newbie

    brushlee

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    #13
    (sigh) So, there is no way to auto-"mute" camera?
    Oh - unless I use some outlet plug compatible with HomeKit and just power off darn thing :rolleyes:
     
  14. jclo Editor

    jclo

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    #14
    That's the exact solution. Plug it into a HomeKit plug. There's no other way to automate a private/off mode.
     
  15. robinp macrumors 6502

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    #15
    Thinking of this as a baby monitor. Some absolute requirements:

    - it doesn’t make a noise unless required to explicitly
    - it doesn’t give off visible light
    - it is reliable

    Does it meet those requirements?
     
  16. aidler macrumors member

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    Jun 18, 2009
    #16
    Yes everybody should be aware of that. At least with Logitech the deal (you need a paid subscription) is transparent from the beginning and there is also a lower tier for only 3.99. Of course, nobody knows if Logitech at some point in the future doesn't decide to change the content of their plans but I don't think Logitech as a bigger and more established company has the need to resort to such reprehensible business behavior.
     
  17. jclo Editor

    jclo

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    #17
    The LED can be turned off, but there is a small red infrared light that comes on when it's in night mode, but it doesn't really put off any light in the room. It is quiet. As for reliability, it's worked well during the time that I've been testing it, but that's only been about two weeks. I think it'd make a decent baby monitor, but get it from Amazon or Best Buy where there's an easy return policy in case it doesn't work out for you.
     
  18. Bigjet macrumors newbie

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    #18
    Everyone considering a Logitech buy should know that an earlier security camera system that wears the Logitech brand, was notorious for simply dying for no apparent reason. I sent $1000 for an interior, and 3 exterior cameras, which all crapped out within a bit over a year. Many others had the same experience, and Logitech left everyone in the lurch. No support for a defective product, just tough nuts to everyone who laid down significant bucks for what should have been a supported product.

    Be wary with Logitech. Not a stand up company in my humble opinion.
     
  19. jclardy macrumors 68040

    jclardy

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    #19
    Local can still mean storing on the network, which means you have a computer somewhere in the house that actually stores the footage (and then have that upload to your own online backup system.)

    The problem I see with all these "cloud" connected cameras...is what happens when the product fails to gain marketshare, then the company decides the service is no longer worth running? You end up with a bunch of bricked devices that can't do anything, unless someone hacks the firmware to make them generic IP cams.
     

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